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tv   The Rachel Maddow Show  MSNBC  May 24, 2011 9:00pm-10:00pm EDT

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stories in the country right now. one is the important special election in new york state where polls are about to close in 15 seconds. that news is coming up in just a moment. but we have to begin tonight with bigger news. with breaking news tonight from oklahoma wrchl a series of tornados have touched down killing at least four people today. the national weather service has warned there is a high risk of more severe weather to come tonight. that warning extends not only to oklahoma but also to parts of texas, parts of kansas and the same part of missouri where sunday's tornado in joplin is now being blamed for the loss of 123 lives and for at least 1750 injuries. the national weather service rating that tornado in joplin an ef-5. it's the highest rating with winds stronger than 200 miles per hour. the associated press reporting that four people are known to have been killed so far today. it is reasonable to expect that those reports may change as the hours and days pass. joining me now is bill karins.
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nbc meteorologist. thanks for being here to understand these big storms. >> the biggest thing that's happening right now we have a tornado warning in effect for the for the worth and dallas, texas, areas. we have a report of a tornado on the ground north of ft. worth. even the north sides of this heavily populated area need to get out of the way. taking your family, your kids into the bathtub if you don't have a basement or getting into storm shelters in the basement. this storm just north of ft. worth. our computer is indicating a tornado. some houses have been damaged north of ft. worth, texas, a powerful storm over top of denton. our come computers indicating a possible tornado. all the drama that played out in the last couple of hours were in oklahoma and the oklahoma city area. the worst of those storms were on the northwest side of oklahoma city. it appears we had a tornado just as strong as the ones through alabama and çjoplin, but this e was mostly outside the city
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limits. that was the only minor saving grace. i say saving grace because it didn't kill over 100 people. it did go through a lot of rural towns. a lot of farms were destroyed. there's going to be deaths with that storm. now as far as these storms as they're progressing, tulsa headed over the top of you now. everyone wants to know what's going to happen when it goes through joplin. joplin has an hour or two before this line of storms goes their way. large hail, damaging winds. it's not going to be fun. it doesn't like like the threat of tornados it's two hours from right now. what's worse about this, it seems like we're doing this about once or twice every week this spring, rachel, another tornado outbreak tomorrow. we're going to be talking about towns like memphis, st. louis, and eventually to neville. this is a left, right hook. one day after another. it's getting to be a little much for everyone. >> bill, in terms of the forecast capablity here, how confident are you in terms of
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those longer term forecasts looking at what we might be expecting 24 hours from now? how wide is the window in which these forecasts for tornados is really confident prediction? >> 24 hours in advance, very good, 48 hours to maybe two or three days gets a little more questionable. at least we can pinpoint a region. once you're out past a week, we couldn't pinpoint where tornados will occur. the forecast for tomorrow a good safe bet. i'm confident we're going to have tornados in the red region during the day. i can't pinpoint the town. that's where it's frustrating for people. the technology isn't good enough to let us know what town has a better chance of being hit than the one next door maybe in decades and years ahead. you mention the technology, this is probably the thing that's the most mind bloeg about this year and what's going on, you, me anyone that wasn't alive in 1953 has never seen anything like this. we've now had 488 fatalities this year. you have to go all the way back
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to the 1920s,ç the '50s. we've never seen death tolls like this. we thought we were getting than this with the forecasting, the tornado sirens all the alerts. this year is a wakeup call for everyone. >> terms of the survivablity of these storms, you look at joplin, missouri, the death toll stands at 123. it's so striking that the buildings destroyed were businesses, schools, banks, well built buildings that just had no hope of standing up against a storm of this strength. is it even possible to build tornado proof trucktures. to think about building codes as a potential way of making these storms more survivable. >> yes. there's cases in joplin where someone had a safe room built and the tornado did not blow apart the safe room. it was strongest ef-5 over 200 miles per hour. the problem is most people can't afford it. it's very expensive to have that
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built into your house. you can't do that everyone. it's not economically feasible. i can't imagine how much money it would cost for everyone in the midwest and southeast to get that done in their homes. the past advice was if a big tornado comes you go to your bathtub, if you have a basement go to the basement. when we had the storm like in joplin, people in their basements they were killed. when you get these really, really strong tornados and this is what's kind of changing this year, i heard it out of oklahoma city today was leave town. get in your car and get out of the way. they don't tell you to do that with big tornados, i would get in the car and get away. the problem is you can get caught on the road if anyone does that. it's a predictment. something that will be studied in the days and weeks ahead. >> bill thanks for helping us understand this tonight. i really appreciate it.ç
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we have the mayor of oklahoma city. let's me start by asking you the status in oklahoma city and what people in oklahoma need to know about surviving these storms right now. >> oklahoma city dodged the bullet. the large tornado was about 15 miles to the north. there was another one about 30 miles to the south. there's low income people. there's high income people. there's people that make their living off agriculture. there's people that commute into oklahoma city. inside the city we dodged the bullet this time. they split us and went north and to the south. >> do you know what's happening tonight in terms of search and rescue and recovery operations in some of those towns that were hit places like piedmont and
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four conners. many of our public safety officers are lending help in the smaller communities that need that assistance. there's still a couple of peo e people -- an. a of an oklahoma city to see on a continual basis this time of year. outstanding congress of storms so we know when and where it's going and we can make our decisions based on what we see. but the warning no doubt saved quite aç few lives and the fac that it did not hit the major metropolitan area. >> mr. mayor, do you feel like, of course, your part of the
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country, your part of the state went through a record-breaking tornado about 12 years ago in 1999, were there he sops learned, accommodations made from having survived that disaster in terms of preparing the community, better for this one or this potential one? >> yes, that's the only f-5 tornado to ever hit oklahoma city in the 130-year history of the city. nonetheless, most new construction of homes since that time has included a safe room. a safe room is a fairly inexpensive small capsule that some people might build below their garage floor that they can get into in an emergency situation. you know, it's still -- keep it -- i've never seen a tornado and i've lived in oklahoma city basically my whole life. it's not like we're infested with them on a continual basis. you live with the warnings. you learn what to do if one is coming your way. you cross your fingers and make the best judgments you can. it's, you know, one of the more dangerous things you can do is
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be in your car and traveling on the interstrait highway. then you don't really have anywhere to go. at the end of the day, people have to make their own decisions. in this part of the country, you live to learn with that in the back of your mind knowing that in the springtime, you need to keep one eye and ear on the media. >> the mayor of oklahoma city. i know this has been an incredibly intense day for you today, sir. good luck for you as this storm season continues and thanks for joining us tonight. appreciate it. >> thank you, rachel. >> we will continue to follow these extreme berth eventsç in the midwest and south. as bill and tornados this is an ongoing situation. it's of course an issue of national concern. we will keep you posted over
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the course of the hour as we get more information. there is breaking political news tonight as well. the polls in new york's special election in the very republican leaning 26th congressional district have just closed in the last few minutes. this is being seen as a bell weather election in terms of the political tide and the country approaching the 2012 election in terms of republican plans for killing medicare, the democratic response to those plans this election tonight is a very big deal. not just for the stroounts of that district, but for everybody looking to see what way the wind are blowing in u.s. politics. we will have first results tonight. [ female announcer ] experience dual-action power,
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. a knew months ago, new york's 26th congressional district was a safe haven for republicans. a they voted reliably republican in every election. now the district is the scene of a hotly-contested congressional
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race, but the democratic candidate was leading in the last two polls heading in to today's voting. what a difference the paul ryan, kill medicare budget makes. the polls just closed this this bellwether special election race. that story is next. what's so special about web browsing on the new blackberry playbook? ♪lash! ah ahh... that's right, it runs flash. so unlike some tablets we could mention, you get the best of the internet, not just part of it.
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♪ flash! ah ahh... ♪ there's yet more breaking news to report. this time from the world of politics. it is now 9:14 p.m. on the east coast which means that polls have just closed in new york's 26th congressional district. this is a special election to fill the seat of former republican congressman christopher lee.
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yes the special election to fill mr. lee's vacated congressional seat was supposed to be a give me for the republicans. even though new york 26 is part of blue state new york, christopher lee's district is a deep red republican stronghold. there's the music. tonight, we are looking at a closely-fought race between the republican candidate with a tea party candidate named jack davis also playing a role here. how big a role is yet to be determined. this seat was seen as being as safe as can be for the republican party. it is heading in to tonight's results seen as up for grabs. all of the available polling in the eleaû9 indicated the democratic candidate kathy hochul could be poised to pull off an upset. polls are closed and we expect results within the hour. we will get a live report from
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the ground in just a moment. the reason you i should know that people are extrapolating from this one race in new york state to national politics is not just because it is fun to do that about any individual election, although it is, it is because the dynamic that is putting the race in play. the dynamic that is giving this candidate a shot is a dynamic at work nationally. this was the front page of the buffalo neez today. nation watches vote in 26th district. medicare issue designs the campaign. the defining issue in this election, including according to the local news, has been the republican candidate's support for the paul ryan kill medicare plan. that one issue, the kill medicare issue, more than any other has turned what should have been an easy victory for the republican party in to a nail biter tonight. this is a deep red district
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that's been put up for grabs because of the paul ryan kill medicare budget and the republican candidate saying she would support that plan. at the last minute this weekend she freaked out and started to recant that position. the fact the republican seat is in trouble shows why other republicans across the country have reason to be concerned this year and heading in to next year. take republican senator brown of massachusetts. please, as acase study on this. on may 13th, two weeks ago, scott brown told an audience in massachusetts, the leaders will bring forward paul ryan's budget and i will vote for it. i will vote for it. if a few days after saying that, staffers for senator brown explained that statement "i will vote for it" was not in fact a statement ofç how the senator would vote on that thing. the explanation was written up by one incredulous massachusetts newspaper as scott brown saying would vote on the kill
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medicare plan but he didn't know which way he would vote on it. he was talking about having the opportunity to vote on it, not necessarily to vote for it. even though he explicitly said "i will vote for it." after saying he wanted to kill medicare and after that saying he had no idea whether he want withed to kill medicare, scott brown eventually settled on no, no he does not want to kill medicare after all. final answer. >> the way the medicare and medicaid proposals and a lot of other proposals in the bill are right now i can't support it. >> he followed up with an ad in plit that he would vote no on medicare but he put it in writing this time. he went from yes,ly kill medicare to i don't know if i will kill medicare to no, i won't kill medicare to oh, my god, seriously, please, i swear i won't kill medicare.
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all in ten days. whatever you think of senator brown his tenure in the senate so far has been micromanaged for its political impact. sort of what you have to do when you are the lone republican in a deep blue state like massachusetts. what explains his frantic flipty flopty chaos on the kill medicare issue? the same thing that explains the hesitance of every republican on any ballot stooim anytime soon the unpopularity of killing medicare. for scott brown the pointy end of the republican opinion is he is on the ballot in massachusetts next year and he has strong challengers, warren, highlighting scott brown's position on medicare wherever he can, like say here on the front page of his campaign website right now. and then starting last night the news that even beyond warren who would be a formidable challenge
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to brown in his right, and now elizabeth warren no, relation. the very popular consumer advocate who is a key adviser and high-profile adviser in the obama administration. democrats are wooing elizabeth warren to run against scott brown for senate in 2012. so that's what scott brown is p challenges before he said he would kill medicare before he took it back. the problem for scott brown and republicans on any ballot anytime soon is the republican party has decided this kill medicare thing is the proverbial hill they want to die on. they decide that descenting from the paul ryan kill medicare plan will bring a heavy price. jennifer rubin wrote in the "washington post" that scott brown deserves a primary challenger, a republican primary challenger because of his ultimate flip floppy decision he would oppose the paul ryan kill
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medicare thing. this is the treatment he is getting from his republican colleagues in congress. watch this. >> respectfully, neil, scott brown ought to be a shame of himself. this is the defining moment of this generation. we have to be bold. we know these entitlements have to be reformed to be saved and any republican that doesn't vote or support this is purely guided by political reasons and shame on them. >> shame.ç republican senator olympia snowe of maine walking in to the same shame buzz saw. she announced she will vote against the paul ryan kill medicare plan when it is brought up in the senate later this week, perhaps as early as tomorrow. the entire republican caucus in the senate with this vote will have to decide if they will go with olympia snowe and scott brown and face the wrath of their party or if they will vot
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to kill medicare like their republican colleagues in the house did. of course the thing that is looming over this is presidential politics. the one doendser who said he didn't want to kill medicare, newt gingrich has recanted after saying that almost destroyed his campaign. newt gingrich now says he would vote to kill medicare. the only candidates that have been able to avoid a position is pollawlenty and romney. we reached out to both of their campaigns to see if they will just say whether or not they support the paul ryan kill medicare plan. a spokesperson for mr. romney told us that mr. romney is on the same page as paul ryan in terms of reducing the budget, but the spokesperson said that mr. romney will propose hit his own changes regarding medicare. we have not heard back from mr. pawlenty's campaign. imagine you are a republican contender. imagine you are running for the
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presidential nomination for the republican party. you are thinking about doing it and right now, like all of us, you are waiting for the first precincts, right, you are waiting if they are results from this little election in 26. they voted for president bush in 2004 and 2008 and john mccain in 2008.ç and the only place on earth a redder thaen than red district. but they have had to pour in a million bucks to save this race for the republican party because the republican candidate made the mistake of saying she supported the paul ryan kill medicare thing. looking at this situation tonight, this deep red territory special election tonight, this is the first district that we have got. it is 2% in. 2% in new york 26. kathy hochul with 43% of the vote. jane core win 44 and davis 12%
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vote. 2% in. this is the first electoral result we will have as a nation. how americans think of republican politicians, even in republican districts. this is the first temperature taking we are going to get in the post paul ryan kill medicare plan era. imagine being a republican presidential contender trying to decide what you will say about the kill medicare thing on a night like tonight. joining us from kathy hochul's headquarters. he is the bureau chief for the buffalo news. thank you for your time tonight. appreciate you joining us. >> thanks, happy to be here. >> let me ask you how the weather was today and how the turnout was in the district. >> the weather was beautiful. a wonderful day to go out and vote. what i am hearing from both sides, both sides said they turned out their voters.
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the republicans say the turnout in the rural counties is strong. that's what they are counting on and the democrats say they got their voters out from the city and urban areas. that spin right now. we don't know how that will translate in the votes but that's what they are saying. >> in terms of antidotal or spin-inflected information abouç turnout f there was good turnout today, do you think that all of the national attention in this race, the millions of dollars spent on advertising and robo calls, do you think that would have pushed up turnout or do you think there is enthusiasm about these candidates? >> i think there are a couple of things that would make the turnout stronger than you would expect. this is a political area. people in western new york like politics and tend to be in to politics and they will turn out for a very exciting race, which sh this is. the weather is certainly a factor and i think the national attention and the medicare issue has engaged people that wouldn't necessarily have been so engaged if it was a run of the mill
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election. >> in terms of the results tonight, can we put up the results one more time? we have a small percentage of the precincts in. 3% reporting right now. the democratic candidate kathy hochul at 46% of the vote. don't put too much stock in this. this is 3% in but that's what we are seeing. jerry, what do you expect in terms of timing on knowing who the winner will be snont do you expect these results will be known before midnight or by tonight for sure? >>. >> it depends how close it is. if it is a definitive result, i would expect that 10:30, 11 p.m. we should know. the republicans went to court to prevent the certification of the election and they are going to pursue that if it looks like
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there is any possibility at all that a recount will mean that jane core win has a chance. >> was that an unusual move? the republican candidates hours and hours before the polls close gets a court order barring srt fi case of any winner today. is that standard operating procedure in this district? for these kind of races or 0 does that tell usç something about what the republican campaign is expecting? >> it is not standard operating procedure in the district but it is standard operating procedure in special elections in new york that happen to be close. i wouldn't read too much in to it. just for that reason. but it could mean a different kind of night than we would expect. it could be that we don't see jane corwin tonight if it is.
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>> jer think thank you for your time. looks like a long night baugh fun one. >> 14% of predicts reports an the latest we have is kathy hochul with 46%, jane corwin with 43% and the tea party candidate jack davis polling at 10%. some prognosticators today, as we will watch the results come in, one thing to keep in mind about the third party factor. republicans, national republicans have been hyping jack davis, the self proclaimed tea party candidate as the real factor in this race. they are trying to spin it so the democrat making such an issue about the republican on the medicare issue is much less important than the third party factor. national prognosticators looking at this, this is beltway common wisdom so take it as a grain of salt say if jack davis polls at
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over 10% f he polls in double-digit it will be difficult for the republican candidate. if he polls in single digits, that will be good news for the republican candidate but that's the beltway kmob wisdom reflecting a lot of the republican spin that the important factor is the tea party candacecy more so than the medicare factor. my polling and cross tabs says that medicare is the defining issue in the race. that's what the local press more as the results come in over the course of this hour and next. one look at the underwelling field for republican president right now and you may think that aunt doreen should run. she never voted to kill medicare and i bet she could take mitt romney and if aunt doreen could beat that guy, why not rio de
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janeiro -- why not rudy giuliani or donald trump? what does that say about his real chances if he goes all the way and why does it tell us the last 24 hours have seen so many republicans say they are maybe going to run all of a sudden. that's coming up. first one more thing about scott brown's rumored to be opponent for senate, elizabeth warren. today after an hour of testimony to a house subcommittee about how elizabeth warren's consumer protection bureau will work in our government, elizabeth warren believed her scheduled testimony was over as per an earlier agreement she made with the committee. and then something weird happened and it happened on tape. two republican members of congress o who were r were not in the room had not yet questioned her. so even though her testimony was over, mchenry blew a gasket these two republicans that weren't there weren't going to
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get to question her. he blew a gasket in a manner most disagreeable. watch this. >> you are staff had a request. my staff said we are going to accommodate you and get you out of here in ten minutes. >> we had an agreement for the time this hearing would occur. >> this is not the case.ç this is not the case. >> mr. chairman, you just did something that i'm trying to be cordial here but you just accused the lady. >> he's accusing me of making an anever i never made. >> you need to clear this up with the staff. they have moved this thing around 50 million times and she has another hearing. >> not to another hearing, another meeting. >> congressman, i would be what glad to answer questions for the record. we can do that on, if you will send us questions for the record we will answer them and they will be a matter of the
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republican record. >> mr. president obama reappoint elizabeth warren to head up the consumer finance agency? no. will she run against scott brown? don't know. will elizabeth warren be called a liar by a congressman that doesn't seem to no know what he is talking about. no, she will not be called a liar. we'll be right back. [ door closes, silence ] [ male announcer ] i know what you're thinking. "leather-trimmed command center, "almost 300 horsepower, "infiniti surround sound, "seating for seven -- wait. this is a minivan?" makes you almost want to have kids. [ child screams ] [ male announcer ] almost. the new 2011 dodge grand caravan. now get $2,000 cash allowance or 0% financing for 60 months on select 2011 dodge grand caravans.
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right now looking at the special election race in new york district 26. kathy hochul is holding at 48%. jane corwin, the republican candidate at 42% and jack davis, the self-proclaimed tea party candidate at 9%. again, this is a deeply red, republican leaning district. new york 26. it is in the buffalo area. this race being watched as a potential bellwether for the nation, at least for the start of the presidential campaign season. a defining issue according to the press is the republican candidate in the race, jane corwin pledged early on she would support the republican's kill medicare budget. the democrat never let that issue go throughout the campaign. and that, by all accounts, is the reason why the race is as close as it is. and at this hour, right now with 33% in, just updated yesterday
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again,ç kathy hochul 48%, jane corwin 42% and the self-proclaimed tea party candidate 9%. right now the democrat ahead but this is one-third of precincts reporting. we will stay with it until we have a result tonight. we'll be right back. on a closed course. ♪ do not attempt at home. always wear your seat belt. ♪ and please drive responsibly. [ male announcer ] it's the most fun you can legally have. see your authorized mercedes-benz dealer for exceptional offers on the c-class. ♪ i've seen the sunrise paint the desert. witnessed snowfall on the first day of spring. ♪ but the most beautiful thing i've ever seen was the image on a screen that helped our doctor
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as we continue to monitor election results from the special congressional election in new york 26 with 33% of precincts reporting the democrat in the lead 48%. the republican, jane corwin, close by hind at 42% and the tea party candidate jack davis at 9%. the deeply republican district. we will keep an eye on this over the course of the night. the base level account of why the race is even close, why the democrat even has a chance in this strongly republican leaning district is because of the issue she made of the republican candidate's pledge that she would vote for the paul ryan kill medicare budget. we will keep an eye on this as more results come in. the past chairman of the republican party, michael steele signed on as a political
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analyst. which is great because it is about republican politicians anç voter and the dynamic between them. so having someone who just headed up the party is priceless. i think michael steele is of good cheer about having the discussion, even though he thinks that msnbc is full of commy pinko o bleeding hearts, like me. in his first appearance at since he signed on with us. i got a totally different answer than i expected when i asked about republicans complaining they want i new candidates to join this field of candidates who are running for their party's nomination this year. isn't that an insult to the candidates that are running i asked. i thought for sure when i asked that he would say no but i couldn't finish the question before he said yes. he said yes it is an insult.
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every republican complaining about how weak the field is and how they want new candidates to get in is slapping in the face the field that is already running it is republicans saying high pawlenty and romney and other guys, we don't think you can do it. we are hoping new people come in and replace you. since mitch daniels announced he is not in the running, which of course leaves romney as the front runner. mitt romney pulling lightyears ahead of anyone else. since it was solidified by mitch daniels getting out, republicans looking a field dominated by mitt romney are unintimidated by him as competition. republicans past, republicans obscure and republicans you didn't know are republicans are coming out of the woodwork since saturday night saying okay, if this is the field i'll run.
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why not? how much should it be seen assen an insult to mitt romney that his status as the clear front runner has rudy joouj giuliani floating the idea of running again, andç donald trump floatg the idea of running again and george pataki to threat threatening he is going to run. roy moore, the alabama ten commandments forming an exploratory committee and thaddeus mccotter threatening to run and getting all sorts of press for it. who is he? a michigan congressman who you may remember from his awkward music videos where he talks about libya and makes fun of prostitution charges while playening a air brushed guitar. when we saw the music videos he was making it led me to speculate on the air he was not running for re-election next year as congressman. i never dreamed that this guy might be running for president.
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the editor of the national review, the conservative magazine, spilled the beans how republicans are feeling right now. what is prompting them to reach so far in to the pickle barrel of possible s that they are pulling up pickles like thaddeus mccotter. he said with governor daniels deciding not to run it is daunting on the pub can mind that it may come down to mitt romney or tim pawlenty. this ranges from disappointment to panic. as their field emerges to the cold light of day. republicans are desperate to be surprised. that desperation, i'm sure, looks like opportunity to somebody like thaddeus mccotter, who i guess thinks this might be his moment, or his chance to sell books or whatever. the desperation looks like a welcome sign to sarah palin who is deciding whether to get in the race. and what do you think it looks
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like if you are mitt romney? if you are mitt romney and you are realizing and being told and reading on the internet machine that the thought of you as the main competition for the nomination makes every republican in the party and their aunt doreen think they have got a shot to win. joining us is e.j., columnist for the "washington post" and senior fellow at the brookings institution. always good to have you here. >> always fun to be here. >> i did not expect to be covering republican presidential con tenders so extensively thi week. what was it about the mitch daniel danie daniels. >> a lot of the old george w. bush desperately wanted mitch daniels to run because they liked him better and thought he would make a better case. romney's problem is that
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republicans don't really trust him because he has flip flopped on abortion and some other questions and he used up all of his flip flop vouchers so he couldn't flip flop on the health care ban faith date in massachusetts. i think these republicans are like that line about vauger in's music, it is better than it sounds. and i think these guys are probably better than they look. but the republicans have set up this sort of commission on orthodox and if you hold any position that violates where the party, where conservatives want the party to be you have to change it. so pawlenty used to believe in doing something about global warming. before he didn't. romney has his change. newt gingrich said on medicare, this ryan proposal was aç bad idea. his problem is he took the position prematurely because
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after tonight and that district 26th district race i think a lot of republicans will say newt was right after all but he couldn't say it at the time. they are making the wrong guys look worse. >> to the point about the new york 26 race. we are watching as further results come in. can we bring up the board? thank you thank you. 55% of precincts in. the democratic candidate kathy hochul in the lead 48%. jane corwin at 43% and the tea party candidate jack davis at 8%. this is with 55% of precincts reporting. e.j., when you wrote about the election you wrote this race is a warning to republicans about the po tenty of the medicare issue. are republicans going to hamstring all of their presidential contenders by making them say they would support this paul ryan plan to kill medicare?
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>> a lot of them have been cagey about this. they haven't gone as far as newt gingrich has. but they clearly don't want to support this plan. you know, what is really striking about these results is 48% for kathy hochul f that holds up, because the republicans wanted to spin this, well, you have this third party candidate, jack davis. a number like that would be almost double the share that the democrat got just last november in 2010. and so i think what you are seeing here is a party that's potentially very vulnerable. in the 2012 elections and also the enthusiasm gap. we talked a lot about that in 2010, the right wing with, tea party wereç mobilized. progressives were asleep. every democrat in the house should write a thank you note to paul ryan tomorrow morning. he woke up the progressive base, and so do did walker and kasich.
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there is something going on that the race represents far more than a nice district in upstate new york. >> you know, i feel like i have to be cautious because you do not want to extrapolate more broadly than is warranted by a single race and particularly a race that is 55% reported at this point but in a district that had a 30,000 republican vote advantage. you can't explain it by enthusing the democrats in the place but you have to attract a lot of independents and republicans and i wonder if the dramatic unpopularity of killing medicare is going to eventually cause some sort of split or opportunity for moderate between republican voters who are not happy with the prospect of killing off medicare and a sort of republican movement that demands their candidates take that stance.
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>> i think in two weeks there may be a new media convention al wisdom which is perhaps we have to take another look at governor huntsman. i think he's going to have his moment because he came in relatively late. he hasn't been forced blender y. and he has a real chance to be, you know, there's a lot of room to be conservative but not that conservative on the republican side and so i think this gives him an opening here and, yeah. of course you're right. we pundits love to over analyze special elections but when you have a district like this, this would be like barney frank losing his seat the last time or chris van hollen out in the very democratic district where i live in maryland. i mean, this is a really republican area and republicans are going to pay a lot of attention to this even ifç the try to downplay it publicly. >> e.j. dionne columnist for "the washington post" and senior fellow at the brookings institution making a grade point about john huntsman also setting up the obvious rejoinder john
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huntsman said he would vote to kill medicare. incredible. thank you so much. appreciate it. >> take care. >> we will be right back with further results from the new york 26. ♪ the new blackberry playbook. it runs all this at the same time. ♪ why can't every tablet do that?
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new bayer advanced aspirin. extra strength pain relief, twice as fast. we are following the special election results in new york 26 right now with 26% of precincts reporting the democratic candidate kathy hochul in the lead with 48%. jane corwin 43% and the tea party candidate jack davis in single digits at 8% of the vote. 61% of the precincts are in. we will be following this tonight and into ed schultz's show in the next hour as we await results in this unexpectedly close deep red district in new york 26.
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the line of violent thunderstorms that saw a series of tornadoes touching down in the oklahoma city area tonight, killing four people, injuring at least 60 more. that line of thunderstorms crossed state lines into kansas. yet another line of storms now moving through the dallas/ft. worth area of texas. for more we turn to nbc news meteorologist bill karins. what's the latest? >> we started the show talking about the line of storms heading for dallas. unfortunately we're hearing now a report of a tornado in the dallas area just north of the downtown region. eagle ford has reported a tornado that was rain wrapped. they saw power flashes. now it's dark.
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so literally there are explosions going on so wean for a fact we had a tornado heading through the downtown dallas area. right behind that there is another storm back toward the ft. worth area and if you're familiar with the ft. worth area in between ft. worth and dallas is arlington where the texas rangers play. that's where six flags is located. that's where the old dallas cowboys stadium is. there is a possible tornado and tornado warning heading for the arlington area and i've heard they've been evacuating. there is a baseball game, major league baseball game with the texas rangers being paid right now. the game is postponed and they're evacuating everyone out of the upper deck because of high winds and hail and now a possible tornado heading for that stadium that probably had 10,000 to 20,000 people at it as these storms are now heading through the region so a very serious, life threatening situation. we've already seen the really strong storm with the confirmed tornado moving to the north of dallas. now there is another storm loading up right behind it. it's going to go right through the dallas metroplex right through downtown. we've already heard of softball sized hail. it's almost guaranteed we have significant damage in downtown
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dallas. now the question is how big was the tornado dhq hit? was it a big monster one? was it one that, you know, was going to be a life taker or is it going to be a small one that just does some damage and skips around town? that we don't know. the information will be coming in as we go throughout the evening. >> is this a situation where people who are in the path of these storms have to make a decision between sheltering in place or fleeing? is that the situation with some of these places? >> you're talking dallas, texas. you can't have everyone get in their cars and run away. no one would get more than two blocks away. there are tornado sirens going o off as we speak. there are people with kids in their basements and bath tubs hoping their lives will be saved. >> when you describe the tornado as rain wrapped what does that mean? >> we get the pretty tornadoes, we call them pretty but the ones we can see like the tuscaloosa one that you saw the whole tornado from far away out in the open country by itself or a tornado can be covered in rain. in other words no one can see it. you don't know it's there. the rain obs cures the visibility on that.
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that's the report we got from eagle ford, texas, north dallas county was that there was a large rain wrapped tornado on the ground with power flashes and at night that's the only way we know a tornado is on the ground because the transformers blow and the power lines are snapping and that's the pure indication that we have a tornado on the ground. >> that can be even more dangerous because you can't see it coming in a recognizable way. >> right now everyone in the dallas area is hunkering down and hoping and praying. >> bill karins nbc news meteorologist this is scary stuff. thank you for helping us explain it and make sense. appreciate it. we will be back in just a moment. again we are looking at election results from new york 26, the special election right now in upstate new york with 66% of precincts reporting the democrat in this race is ahead 48%. the republican candidate five points back at 43%. áe tea party candidate in this race is jack davis. he right now is polling in the single digits. republicans have been saying the only reason this race was close
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was that jack davis was going to be pulling in a significant portion of the vote which is going to make it hard for jane corwin to compete even in this very, very strongly republican district. at least right now with just under 2/3 of precincts reporting, davis is not making it out of single digits and the democrat is still way ahead. we've been looking at polling heading into this, the last two polls, showed the democrat ahead heading into today's voting. the crosses in one of those polls showed what was driving the support for kathy hochul seemed to be strong concerns about medicare. the republican candidate in this race, jane corwin saying early on that she would vote for the paul ryan medicare plan. the democrat never let go of that issue throughout this race. right now again with just under 2/3 of precincts reporting, 66%, that democratic candidate kathy hochul who by all accounts ran a very strong race is ahead by five points. again, we will be keeping you posted as these